Raises $25,000 for Imagine1day

The most common question a student hears at this time of the year is 'What did you do this summer?' and despite all the elaborate plans you had made during the spring, to hitchhike, skydive, travel, and save the world, most of us answer with the usual – hung out with friends, worked, not much. But for Rachel Moxam this summer has been one to remember forever. On May 31, 2009 Rachel packed up her bag, strapped on her helmet and rode her bike across Canada to raise $25 000 for a non-profit organization called Imagine1day. After riding 6690km, and facing everything from rainstorms to flat tires, she arrived in Halifax on August 13.
Rachel is a recent graduate from the Global Stewardship Program at Capilano University, which is a program designed to bring students who have an interest in working within the not-for-profit sector into an environment where they can work and learn together. Part of the program is to connect students with organizations on both a local and international level.
Through the Global Stewardship program, Rachel was connected with Imagine1day, an organization whose aim is to provide young children in Ethiopia with education.
To achieve their own goal, Imagine1day have set up a “Creatribution” program, which combines the three pillars the organization is defined by – creativity, passion and contribution. It is a project that any individual can initiate on their own in order to raise money and awareness for the cause. This idea appealed to Rachel as an opportunity to get involved.
Rachel's aim was to raise awareness about women's education issues. She chose to ride across Canada by herself, for two main reasons. For one, to prove that anyone can do anything if they have the will, and also that women don't need to be protected, they can stand on their own. As Rachel puts it, “Being treated as an equal means regarding yourself as equal.” To see Canada had been a dream of hers – this was just the opportunity to fulfill it.
Although Rachel had no previous cycling experience, she chose to bike for environmental reasons, and for the slower pace. Throughout her trip, Rachel carried everything she needed on the back of her bike, camping for around half the nights, and making connections with friends and family for the majority of the rest. However, Rachel admits there were also a few nights of bad weather when she would stay in a motel room.
Cam Sylvester, head of the Global Stewardship Program, says that Rachel is “low-key” when you first meet her, but possesses a “real powerful force inside of her.” Rachel, on the other hand, regards herself as being no different from everyone else. When asked how people reacted to her 'creatribution', she explained “A lot of people say I'm brave and that they could never do something like that - that's frustrating to hear. I guess they mean it as a compliment, but like I said, one my reasons for the trip was to show how much each and every individual can do.”
Rachel's summer is not for just her to remember, but for others to take notice of as well. “Everyone has the same potential, we all just have to realize it,” says Rachel.
To read more about her trip, check out

by Jenny Vienneau

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